This week, Twitter silenced another prominent conservative voice — this time, one relied on heavily by parents and older generations distant from today’s social media fads. Libs of TikTok, the social media account that offered parents insight on what the world was exposing to their children through educators and pop culture, was suspended for 12 hours on Twitter. The social media giant said that the account’s content violated rules on hateful conduct: promoting violence against, threatening, or harassing other people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliatoin, age, disability, or serious disease.
Effectively, Twitter implemented its “account-level enforcement” of “placing an account in read-only mode.” Twitter noted that it saved these account-level tactics for “particularly egregious” or repeated violations of its rules.
The account launched in November 2020, reposting videos from the Chinese social media app TikTok in order to display a more comprehensive view of the left’s political ideology. It began to pick up more popularity last summer, jumping from under 100 likes to several hundred to thousands within months. The account owner’s identity remains anonymous, but virtual anonymous interviews revealed that the owner is female.
According to social media analyses, Libs of Tiktok’s most-used words included, in order: teacher, students, school, parents, and kids. At the time of her suspension, she had close to 612,000 followers. The highest number of retweets achieved on one tweet revealing that a school nurse was suspended over “transphobic comments” reached over 6,000, while the highest number of likes reached over 26,000 on a clip of Fox News host Tucker Carlson praising her work.
News of the account’s suspension came from Seth Dillon, CEO of The Babylon Bee: a satire news company that was banned from Twitter. The satire site’s ban occurred after it published the story, “The Babylon Bee’s Man Of The Year Is Rachel Levine,” poking fun at the current U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHS) assistant secretary of health.
As evident, the offending content of both Twitter accounts remain available. However, Twitter stipulated to The Babylon Bee that it must remove the offending tweet before it may access its account. Twitter placed no such stipulation on Libs of TikTok — the suspension functioned as a warning to moderate future content.
AZ Free News has relied on Libs of TikTok and even TikTok itself for our reporting. In October, we discovered that the teacher nominated by Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs for a national youth leadership award was pushing the vast majority of popular left-wing political ideologies in her elementary school classroom. Libs of TikTok helped notify Arizonans and the world of the three female students at Arizona State University (ASU) who harassed two fellow students for being white males with perceived conservative attire in their multicultural center.
Most recently, Libs of Tik Tok revealed an American government class at ASU telling students that state efforts to require voter ID, get rid of permanent early voting lists, restrict early voting, remove mail-in voting, and close primaries were forms of voter suppression.
Following approval by the Arizona House on Thursday, the legislature as a whole passed SB1165, a bill preventing transgender athletes from competing against those of the opposite gender. If the governor signs the legislation into law, it will impact transgender girls and women; males have biological differences to females that give them advantages in sports, and there are many more boys and men competing in girls and women’s sports. However, the legislation doesn’t address women who take testosterone as part of their hormone therapies, which may give them an advantage over their non-doping peers — a concern posed in the case of transgender wrestler Mack Beggs.
State Representative John Kavanagh (R-Fountain Hills) pushed back against arguments against the bill, namely those that claimed individuals would be banned from competing in any sports entirely, or that sports aren’t really about competition but inclusion. Kavanagh cited the recent incident in which the NCAA awarded William Thomas, who goes by the name Lia Thomas and claims to be a woman, the gold medal in one race within their national D1 collegiate swim competition. The state representative argued that the years of hard work, sacrifice, and dedication committed by the women were for naught in the face of Thomas’ robbery.
“This bill allows everybody to participate in sports. It simply says that you have to go on the team that aligns with your biological gender because quite frankly, puberty conveys significant physical advantages on males. And I think it’s very unfair to make biological female athletes compete at that disadvantage. And it recently came to light in the NCAA swimming area. I think that those biological females have been cheated and robbed of a lifetime of effort,” said Kavanagh. “Clearly, there are many good things that come out of school sports besides competition. It’s fun, there’s physical fitness, there’s health. But competition is one of the major things about school sports, and anybody that doubts that might ask themselves, ‘Why are they keeping score?’ if that’s not the case.”
Democrats insisted that males competing in female sports isn’t and won’t be an issue.
State Representative Melody Hernandez (D-Tempe) claimed that transgender women aren’t dominating women’s sports.
“We talked about whether or not this is actually a problem. Trans youth are not coming in and just dominating women’s sports and switching genders because they want to go dominate sports,” said Hernandez.
State Representative Sarah Liguori (D-Phoenix) claimed that Republicans were merely scared of change and due to their ignorance. Liguori cited Harvey Milk, the historic gay rights activist accused of pedophilia and rape.
“We do not need to be afraid. We do not need to be afraid of transgender people, we do not need to be afraid of children,” said Liguori.
Certain Democrats even challenged the idea that males have any physical advantages over females. State Representative Mitzi Epstein (D-Chandler) argued that the males who dominate are merely exceptions to a rule, and that they succeed because of their hard work and discipline — not their biological advantages.
“When we hear of one trans athlete making great success, it is due to the hard work and discipline she applied to her sport,” wrote Epstein. “One example does not mean all trans people are better at sports than cis people.”
A Senate bill banning males from female sports teams advanced out of the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday, passing along party lines. The legislation would apply to both private and public K-12 schools, colleges, and universities.
The legislation prohibits political groups, licensing organizations, and athletic associations from investigating or taking action against schools for adhering to the bill provisions. Conversely, a school would bear civil liability for any deprivation of athletic opportunity, or causing direct or indirect harm by ignoring the legislation. Students would be entitled to take a private cause of action and could earn damages and relief.
The bill sponsor, State Senator Nancy Barto (R-Phoenix), said that the bill was based on scientific fact to ensure that girls have a “fair, level playing field.” Barto said that the threat of biological males identifying as females undermined Title IX.
Barto cited data from Save Women’s Sports, a coalition to prevent males from competing in female sports, documenting the males competing in female sports. Barto also cited the case of Lia Thomas, the transgender woman on the Penn State University women’s swim team.
After dubbing Barto the “Queen of Mean,” Arizona House Democrats praised a 13-year-old transgender girl, Skyler Morrison, who spoke against the legislation. The boy was accompanied by his mother.
“I’ve had my childhood ripped away from me by legislators for seven years and I’m sick of fighting for human rights, but I won’t stop until I know that me and all my transgender friends are safe,” said Morrison. “These anti-trans sports bills are unscientific and cause a real mental health issue for the people they would affect.”
Morrison claimed that testosterone doesn’t give biological males an athletic edge, and that females could still win in competition against their male peers.
The Arizona Interscholastic Association revealed that they have received 16 appeals for transgender athletes and only denied one.
Minority Whip Domingo DeGrazia (D-Tucson) claimed that the bill solved something that wasn’t an issue.
“If a youth loses an opportunity for something either to be in competition or that they lose a competition or that they don’t get a sponsorship or that they don’t get to be an influencer of TikTok; if that’s their indirect harm, how do you attribute that to sports to an opposing player?” asked DeGrazia.
After the committee approved the bill, Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman claimed that the bill would harm all student athletes — even those females whose opportunities and possibly safety that the bill promised to protect.